10 Outrageous Hollywood Lawsuits
In the U.S., you can sue someone for just about anything. Whether or not you can win, of course, is another story entirely, and even being a rich, powerful celebrity doesn’t always guarantee a victory.
With that in mind, we found 10 of the most outrageous lawsuits in recent Hollywood history — in a few, stars sued other stars, while in others, the famous were named in suits filed by mere mortals. Some cases had merit, and some were just utterly ridiculous. But regardless, they’re all entertaining.
Lindsay Lohan vs. the E-Trade Baby
Back in 2010 (before LiLo had been in enough trouble to beat some humor into her), the actress took issue with an E-Trade ad that depicted one of its talking babies as a “milkaholic” named Lindsay. So she sued the financial company for $100 million, claiming it had used her “likeness, name, characterization and personality” without permission and had therefore violated her right to privacy.
The ad firm that made the spot said baby Lindsay was named after a member of its account team, but E-Trade reportedly threw a little cash at LiLo anyway and she withdrew the suit.
Selena Gomez’s ‘Dad’ vs. Justin Bieber
Last year, a guy claiming to be Selena‘s father filed suit against the Biebs, claiming — among other things — the tween phenom stole his credit card, used it to pay for a penis enlargement, knocked up Gomez on a bear rug and did blow with Diddy “in drug free school zones.” When Justin and Usher weren’t sodomizing the plaintiff with fireworks while listening to Katy Perry, of course.
“I’m an emotional mess,” the suit concludes. “America must boycott Bieber’s music!” And while we may not necessarily disagree with that, the case was reportedly thrown out of court. Likely because the dude who filed it is a certifiable kook.
Nicolas Cage vs. Kathleen Turner
In her 2008 memoir ‘Send Yourself Roses,’ Turner wrote that while she and Cage were making their 1986 movie ‘Peggy Sue Got Married,’ the actor was “arrested twice for drunk-driving and, I think, for stealing a dog. He’d come across a Chihuahua he liked and stuck it in his jacket.”
Nic disputed that and filed a libel suit in the U.K. against her, as well as the book’s publisher and The Daily Mail, which ran an excerpt of the autobiography that included the passage above. And he won — resulting in apologies, retractions, having his legal fees paid and the defendants making a substantial donation to charity.
Tara Reid vs. Sky Las Vegas
When Diddy turned 35 in 2004, he threw himself the mother of all parties. And since this was back when Tara Reid was still a thing, she got an invite — and on her way in, she accidentally flashed a whole lot of her brand new boob job (NSFW video here) when the strap of her black satin gown slipped off her shoulder.
Later on, Sky Las Vegas, a luxury condo building in Sin City, ran an ad with the tagline, “Dear Tara Reid. Come let it all hang out.” She sued, saying the ad damaged her reputation by implying the wardrobe malfunction had been intentional and that she was “sexually lewd or immoral.” The case was settled (for an undisclosed sum) and dismissed in 2005.
Mariah Carey vs. Mary Carey
The porn star born as Mary Ellen Cook began using the name Mary Carey professionally in 2002, but when she tried to trademark the name four years later, singer Mariah Carey sued to stop the action, saying she was worried the similar-sounding name would cause confusion.
A judge reportedly sided with Mariah in early 2007 and ruled the adult film actress couldn’t trademark the name Mary Carey. But the porn star’s attorney wins with this comment: “Does Mariah Carey realize what her lawyer is comparing her to? Do they seriously think the fans are going to be confused?”
50 Cent vs. Taco Bell
In 2008, the fast food chain, in what it thought was a cute effort to promote its low-cost items, sent a letter to a slew news outlets all over the country inviting the rapper to change his name to “79 Cent,” “89 Cent” or “99 Cent.” Problem was, some people thought Fiddy was in on it and he was chastised online for being a sellout.
Disappointed Moviegoer vs. ‘Drive’
After seeing the 2011 movie ‘Drive,’ Sarah Deming of Michigan filed suit against the film’s distributors because the trailer made her expect an action flick akin to the ‘Fast and Furious’ franchise. She was also unhappy that ‘Drive’ featured “very little driving” but a whole lot of what she described as “dehumanizing racism directed against members of the Jewish faith.”
She wanted price of her movie ticket refunded and a promise from the filmmakers not to create misleading trailers again. A judge dismissed her suit in March of 2012.
The Entire Asian Pacific Islander Population of L.A. vs. Miley Cyrus
Four years ago, a 16-year-old Miley did a really dumb thing when she and a group of friends squinted and/or pulled the corners of their eyes back in an apparent mocking of Asians — and let themselves be photographed that way. Of course the pic found its way onto the internet, resulting in outrage from a variety of Asian American groups — and an almost immediate lawsuit.
Lucie J. Kim of Los Angeles filed a $4 billion (yes, with a B) suit, saying each of the roughly 1 million Asian Pacific Islanders in L.A. County was entitled to at least $4,000 in damages for civil rights violations. Miley publicly apologized a whole bunch and the lawsuit was dismissed by a judge later that year.
AmEx vs. Courtney Love vs. AmEx
Courtney Love gets sued a lot, but in this particular instance, credit card issuer American Express filed suit against the Hole frontwoman in 2010 for failing to repay more than $350,000 in charges she’d allegedly racked up on three accounts. She later countersued, claiming the company’s business practices were sloppy enough that it had issued 104 cards in her name to God knows who and she’d never used any of them.
The whole mess was settled (confidentially, of course) and dismissed in February of 2011.
Jack Ass vs. ‘Jackass’
In 2003, a guy legally named Jack Ass sued MTV’s parent company Viacom for $10 million, claiming the ‘Jackass’ television and movie franchise had defamed him. Seems the plaintiff changed his name to Jack Ass some years before as part of a drunk driving awareness campaign, and the idiocy of Johnny Knoxville and the gang was ruining all his hard work.
For what it’s worth, Johnny was delighted about the lawsuit, saying, “What could be more American than just suing the living s— out of someone for no reason at all?”
Mr. Ass proved he’d chosen his name well when he decided to represent himself, but in the end, it didn’t matter. He died before the case went to court.